Downtown Community Ministry
In 1969 amidst global war and radical social change in New Zealand, Downtown Community Ministry (or Inner City Ministry – as it was first known) was born. As a child of the 60’s, DCM began with a strong belief that we all have a responsibility to address the pressing issues of the day. Over the years a proud history has developed of engaging in social issues, advocating for change and supporting those in need.
From establishing community workers, clean teams, child care, homelessness prevention, benefit advocacy, housing trusts, home tutor programmes, Vincents Art Studio and the Wellington People’s Resource Centre, Downtown Community Ministry has boldly responded to need and promoted innovative solutions to the city’s policy makers.
Today we remain firmly in touch with issues for disadvantaged people in Wellington and continue our commitment to providing support and advocacy for those in need in the inner city.
Those who access our services frequently have backgrounds of homelessness and/or drug, alcohol or gambling addictions. Many carry personal debt and some have a criminal history.
Three key programmes have been developed to address these issues:
- Project Margin locates suitable housing and assists people to remain housed,
- the Street People Project offers a banking service with total money management;
- the Food Bank provides necessary food items, referrals to other appropriate services and identifies the factors contributing towards food bank use.
More recently, we are responding to the ‘culture of hopelessness’ common within our client group by developing personal development plans and assisting clients into training or work opportunities.